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Looks like Donald Trump will likely pick Mike Pence — known for his “one-man crusade against Planned Parenthood” — as his vice presidential running mate. Pence has made a career out of restricting access to reproductive health and rights.

It’s no surprise that Trump, who’s said he’s the best chance to overturn Roe v. Wade and that women should be punished for having an abortion, would pick someone with such an extreme position against women’s access to basic health care. For the full details of Pence’s long record, see below.


For years, Mike Pence has been on what Politico dubbed a “one-man crusade” to end patients’ access to care at Planned Parenthood. In Congress, he introduced six separate measures aimed at blocking care at Planned Parenthood, and was willing to shut down the federal government rather than allow women to access cancer screenings, birth control and well-woman exams at Planned Parenthood health centers.


Pence also is staunchly anti-abortion, and signed into law a measure that means doctors could face a wrongful death lawsuit if they provide abortion care to a woman after learning about a pregnancy complication. The bill was one of the most extreme in the country – prompting women to protest en masse in what was dubbed “Periods for Pence.”


In fact, one article claimed “Nobody hates Planned Parenthood quite as much as Mike Pence.” As governor, his ‘crusade’ against Planned Parenthood ultimately led a Planned Parenthood health center to close its doors in Scott Co., Indiana, a rural county in the midst of an HIV epidemic, leaving no other access to testing and counseling that Planned Parenthood provides every day.   


  • In Congress, Pence introduced six separate measures aimed at blocking patients from accessing care at Planned Parenthood health centers: He introduced three bills as well as three amendments in an effort to prevent millions of patients from accessing life saving care at Planned Parenthood health centers. [H.R. 217,1/07/11; H.Amdt.95 to HR 1,2/17/11; H.R. 614,1/21/09; H.Amdt.389 to HR 3293,7/24/09; HR 4133,11/09/07; H.Amdt.594 to HR 3043,7/19/07]

  • Pence was willing to shut down the government over Planned Parenthood funding: In 2011, Pence said on Morning Joe that “of course” he was willing to “hold up this entire budget over defunding Planned Parenthood.” [Crooks and Liars,4/5/11]

  • Politico called Pence’s determination to deny patients care at Planned Parenthood health centers a “one-man crusade” and said that “nobody hates Planned Parenthood quite as much as Mike Pence.” [Politico,2/16/11]

  • Pence said efforts to block patients from care at  Planned Parenthood were the most “fiscally responsible” way to address issues facing the economy:  Pence told the audience at the 2010 Iowa Faith and Freedom Coalition that: "To those who say we should focus on fiscal issues, instead of the right to life, I say, 'What is more fiscally responsible than rolling back this administration's effort to expand funding for abortion at home and abroad? What is more fiscally responsible than denying any and all funding to Planned Parenthood of America?" [Politico,10/4/10]

  • Pence wants to see Roe v. Wade overturned: In 2006, Pence said that Justice Alito should be confirmed because he would “make it possible once and for all to end Roe v. Wade.” [The Washington Post,1/24/06]

  • Pence has also said: “I long for the day that Roe v. Wade is sent to the ash heap of history, when we move past the broken hearts and the broken lives of the past 38 years.” [Congressional Record, Pence Floor Remarks on H. Amdt. 95 to HR 1,2/17/11]

  • Amid Planned Parenthood health center closures, Indiana has seen soaring HIV rates under Gov. Pence — prompting him to declare a public health emergency:  “Scott County, Indiana, the center of an exploding HIV outbreak, has been without an HIV testing center since early 2013, when the sole provider -- a Planned Parenthood clinic -- was forced to close its doors. The clinic did not offer abortion services. The Scott County clinic and four other Planned Parenthood facilities in the state, all of which provided HIV testing and information, have shuttered since 2011, in large part due to funding cuts to the state's public health infrastructure. Those cuts came amid a national and local political campaign to demonize the health care provider. Now, the state is scrambling to erect pop-up clinics to combat an unprecedented HIV epidemic caused by intravenous drug use.” [Huffington Post,3/31/15]

  • As governor, Pence has signed multiple anti-women’s health measures into law: Including this March, when he passed some of the most invasive and extreme abortion restrictions in the country –– despite strong opposition from the public and the medical community. The law is wide-sweeping and includes a ban on women from seeking abortion care because the child will be born with disability,, it mandates that women receive an unnecessary ultrasound 18 hours ahead of getting abortion, and requires that all fetal remains must be buried or cremated, even if the woman has miscarried. [The New York Times,3/24/16; Vox,3/26/16]

  • Thousands of people protested outside the Indiana statehouse after Pence signed the anti-abortion bill into law: “...more than 1,000 protesters who gathered outside the Statehouse in Indianapolis on Saturday to rally for women's rights and to protest House Enrolled Act 1337, the controversial abortion bill Gov. Mike Pence signed into law last month.” [Indystar.com,4/9/16]

  • Additionally, the bill prompted women to call the governor in protest, earning the slogan “Periods for Pence.”

  • As governor, Pence signed a law to legalize discrimination against LGBT people: The law was criticized around the country, leading Pence to “revise” it, but not before costing the state at least $60 million in revenue. [The Huffington Post,4/2/15; The Advocate,1/26/16]

  • In Congress, Pence voted multiple times against equal pay measures: Including voting twice times against the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, which is now the law of the land and ensures that workers have protections against pay discrimination. [H.R. 2831,7/31/07; S. 181,1/27/09]



  • Trump said the biggest way to ban abortion is “by electing me president”: “Asked on Fox News what one thing he would do to ‘protect the sanctity of life,’ Trump told host Bill O’Reilly, ‘I will protect it, and the biggest way you can protect it is through the Supreme Court and putting people on the court. Actually, the biggest way you can protect it, I guess, is by electing me president.’” [Huffington Post, 5/11/16]

  • Trump: If abortion is banned then there should be “some form of punishment” for women seeking abortions: “The statement came as Mr. Trump appeared at a town-hall-style forum with Chris Matthews of MSNBC, recorded for broadcast on Wednesday night. Mr. Matthews pressed Mr. Trump, who once supported abortion rights, on his calls to ban the procedure, asking how he might enforce such a restriction. ‘You go back to a position like they had where they would perhaps go to illegal places,’ Mr. Trump said, after initially deflecting questions. ‘But you have to ban it.’ He added, after a bit more prodding, ‘There has to be some form of punishment.’” [The New York Time, 3/31/16]

  • Opposes overturning the Hyde Amendment: “Public funding of abortion providers is an insult to people of conscience at the least and an affront to good governance at best.”  [Washington Examiner, 1/23/16]

  • Would appoint “pro-life” judges to the Supreme Court: Donald Trump told conservative, Christian media mogul and founder of Regents University Pat Robertson that he would elect “pro-life” judges to the Supreme Court, “Robertson asked Trump what he would look for in a Supreme Court nominee. Justice Antonin Scalia died Feb. 13, leaving the high court with four Democratic appointees and four Republican appointees. ‘Pro-life,’ Trump said without hesitation. ‘I’ve always said that Justice (Clarence) Thomas doesn’t get enough credit. Justice (Samuel A.) Alito is a terrific guy ... so in that realm,’ Trump added.” [Richmond Times-Dispatch2/24/16]

  • On CNN’s State of the Union, Trump said being “pro-life”  would be a litmus test for SCOTUS nominees: TAPPER: You're pro-choice or pro-life? TRUMP: I'm pro-life… . TAPPER: How important is that issue to you now when President Trump picks Supreme Court justices? Would that be a litmus test? TRUMP: It is. It is.” [CNN’s State of the Union6/28/15]

  • Trump releases list of potential Supreme Court nominees; many are pro-life: “Several of the judges on Mr. Trump’s list have questioned abortion rights. They included Raymond W. Gruender, a judge on the Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit who led a majority that permitted South Dakota to enforce a law requiring doctors to tell women that abortions ‘terminate the life of a whole, separate, unique living human being.’ They also included William H. Pryor Jr. of the 11th Circuit, whose appointment Senate Democrats had tried to block in part because, in his previous role as Alabama attorney general, he denounced Roe v. Wade, the 1973 ruling that established a constitutional right to abortion, as having manufactured ‘a constitutional right to murder an unborn child.’” [New York Times, 5/19/16]


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